Dr. Youngran Park

Dr. Park received her Ph.D. in Pathobiology from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and is currently a postdoctoral research fellow at JHU. She received Pathology Young Investigator Day Award at 2016 and 2017 for her study of ARID1A function in DNA repair. She strongly believes the spirit of translational research is to alleviate human suffering through research.

Osteopontin and Endometriosis

Although characterized as a benign disease, some properties of endometriosis mimic malignant tissues such as proliferation, cell invasion, and metastasis. Osteopontin, also called secreted phosphoprotein 1, is one of the important molecular targets in cancer progression and metastasis. Osteopontin has been found in a variety of tissues including bone matrix, secretory glands, and some tumor tissues, and also secreted by activated immune cells. A previous study illustrates that Osteopontin is overexpressed in a wide range of malignant tumors including endometrial carcinoma, and…

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Stem cell and exosome therapy

These days, two experimental methods, stem cell, and exosome therapy are getting more attention. Stem cell therapy has shown promising effects in regenerative medicine, including myocardial infarction, nervous system impairment, retinal damage, and liver diseases. Recent studies showed that stem cells could secrete nano-scale vesicles called exosomes. Exosomes are soluble, bi-layer nano-vesicle cargos, ranging from 30 to 150 nanometers. They are released from the naturally occurring late endosomes and contain different molecules such as enzymes, microRNAs, DNA fragments, lipids, and…

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Cellular communications: Exosomes in Endometriosis

Exosomes have been reported as cell-to-cell communicators, transfer many molecules such as miRNAs, RNAs, and proteins, and their alteration may cause many disease processes, including endometriosis. Considering the role of exosomes and their cargos in a cell to cell communication as important factors in folliculogenesis and endometrial development, understanding of exosomes in the endometriosis context is highly important. Here, Dr. Yousefi group summarizes the recent reports of extracellular vesicles (EV) secreted by follicles and endometrium. This review paper is recently published in…

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Antioxidant Enzymes in Endometriosis

Recent attention has been focused on the effect of oxidative stress in the development of endometriosis. Especially, there are several studies regarding glutathione peroxidase (GPX), a major enzyme in removing various reactive oxygen species. In the field of infertility, the role of oxidative stress in recurrent miscarriages with unknown etiology has been investigated. The expression of glutathione peroxidase between eutopic and ectopic endometrial tissues is also different. Though several studies suggest the importance of GPX in endometriosis, it is currently…

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Bowel surgery for endometriosis

Endometriosis is an estrogen-dependent disorder. The disease harbors various complications. Deep endometriosis involving the bowel is only one aspect of the condition that has variable phenotypic presentations and pathologic subtypes. Knowledge of the short- and long-term risks of the surgical management of endometriosis involving the bowel is a key competency for the surgeon and essential to help guide patients through the treatment process. However, the literature to date has inherent limitations that prevent generalizability. Here, Dr. Singh group from Canada…

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Immune cells and endometriosis pain

Endometriosis is an estrogen-dependent inflammatory disorder in women. This disease leads to dysmenorrhea, pelvic pain, and infertility. The immune reaction is one of the most widely accepted pathologies of endometriosis. Estrogen dysfunction stimulates immune cells in the peritoneal cavity affecting not only T & B lymphocytes, peritoneal macrophages, but also inflammatory mediators. In a previous study, M2 macrophages have been shown to play key roles in promoting endometriosis progression. Importantly, there is crosstalk among macrophages, natural killer (NK) cells, and T…

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Increased expression of epithelial cell adhesion molecule and its possible role in epithelial-mesenchymal transition in endometriosis.

Endometriosis is an estrogen-dependent disease that functional endometrial tissue exists outside both the uterine cavity and myometrium. The pathogenesis of endometriosis remains unclear and controversial. According to the implantation theory, which is the most well-known, migration and invasion are two critical processes for the development of endometriosis. Accumulating evidence demonstrated that endometriosis has mobile and invasive features. Epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) has been more attractive as one of the essential molecular mechanisms contributing to metastasis and invasion, which are critical for…

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Local inflammation and follicle development in women with ovarian endometriosis

Endometriosis, a cause of subfertility, is found in almost 50% of infertile women. The elevated levels of cytokines in the follicular fluid of patients with endometriosis might account for the ovulatory dysfunction. Granulosa cells (GCs) play important roles in follicular development. In patients with endometriosis, abnormalities in GCs might impair oocyte maturation and lead to poor oocyte quality. Nuclear factor k B (NF-kB) was the key point in inflammation. Activated by inflammatory cytokines, NF-kB was involved in cascade signal amplification…

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Race, socioeconomic status, and health

Racial disparities in health have been long noted in the United States. The differences in socioeconomic status across racial groups are a major contributor to racial disparities in health. However, race reflects multiple dimensions of social inequality. Understanding and effectively addressing racial disparities in health requires an appreciation of the contributing factors that importantly affect the racial patterning of the distribution of disease. In this paper, Dr. Collins group provides an overview of recent research on racial disparities in health…

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Immune System, Cytokines and Endometriosis

Endometriosis is an estrogen-dependent chronic disease. Diagnosing endometriosis is difficult because the signs and symptoms vary considerably. Therefore, the discovery of a reliable non-invasive diagnostic biomarker would represent a major advance for the clinical diagnosis of endometriosis.  It has been addressed that endometriosis is an inflammatory disease, where endocrine-immunological interactions are probably involved in the pathogenesis of the disease. The study of some cytokines as predictors or discriminators of the disease is promising. One possible cause for the development of…

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miR-92a and progesterone resistance in endometriosis

Endometriosis is an estrogen-dependent disorder. This incidence of this disease is 35% to 50% among those who suffer from chronic pelvic pain and infertility, which has a negative effect on the quality of life and on health. Recent genome-wide associations studies have revealed a strong connection between endometriosis and the 10q23–26 chromosome loci where PTEN is encoded. PTEN is a tumor-suppressor gene, and its functional inactivation is closely related to the endometrial diseases. In endometriosis, it was demonstrated that the…

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tRNA-derived fragments in ovarian endometriosis?

Endometriosis is an estrogen-dependent mysterious disorder characterized by the presence of endometrium outside the normal location of the uterus cavity. This disease affects approximately 10% of reproductive-aged women and becomes a major reason for infertility in reproductive-aged women and dysmenorrhea in teenage girls. Numerous studies have focused on the pathogenesis of endometriosis, but the exact mechanism of disease progressions still remains unclear. Therefore, it is essential to explore new key molecules that may play important roles in endometriosis. Transfer RNA…

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Early Life Factors for Endometriosis

Endometriosis affects approximately 10% of reproductive-aged women. Despite the significant impact, the etiology of endometriosis is still unclear. A recent systematic review of 15 studies of adolescents found that overall 65% of girls undergoing laparoscopic investigation were diagnosed with endometriosis. The high prevalence of endometriosis among young women suggests the onset of the disease might be earlier than anticipated. Research that focuses on potential factors in early life, including exposures in utero, may provide insights on the etiology of endometriosis.…

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Regulation of Inflammation in Endometriosis

Endometriosis is an estrogen-dependent and multifaceted gynecological condition. Unfortunately, this disease frequently causes chronic and cyclic pelvic pain. Though there are several treatments are available, there is not an actual cure for this disease. Therefore, the development of new therapy based on the understanding of endometriosis is highly important.  Endometriosis is frequently considered as an inflammatory disease. In most cases, the pain is due to an invasion of endometrial cells and pro-inflammatory mediators on the nerve fibers. Therefore, Dr. García-Gómez…

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Phytotherapy as an alternative endometriosis treatment

Endometriosis is an estrogen-dependent gynecological disease that affects 5–10% of women in fertile age. Different therapeutic strategies are available to treat this disease, such as surgery, hormonal therapies, and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.  Medical therapy usually consists of different hormonal drugs, including combined hormonal contraceptives, progestogens, anti-progestogens, and so on. To date, there is no robust evidence to support a specific hormonal therapy over the others. Although multiple pharmacological strategies are available, a recent systematic review showed that the efficacy of…

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The role of acidic ribosomal protein P1 in Endometriosis

Endometriosis is an estrogen-dependent disorder. The disease develops and composed of the ectopic endometrial-like tissue which establishes primarily in the pelvic cavity. Previous findings clearly show that estrogen-related factors are critical for endometriosis development and progression. However, we do have a limited understanding of the complexity of the environment. RPLP1 is part of the ribosomal subunit which functions in regulating protein elongation translation factors. Interestingly, its expression is regulated by the estrogen target gene, c-Myc. According to previous research, RPLP1…

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Impact of Genetic Variations in Endometriosis

Endometriosis is an estrogen-dependent disorder. This disease affects approximately 7% to 10% of reproductive-aged women and causes negative impacts on society. The underlying causes are unclear; therefore, the understanding of this disease remains a major clinical challenge. Endometriosis has a complicated etiology, influenced by genetic and environmental factors. Thanks to the current advances in genetics, more than 40 genetic risk factors have been discovered in endometriosis. Also, a significant amount of somatic mutation has been found, expanding the possible functions…

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CXCR4 or CXCR7 antagonists as novel therapies for endometriosis

Endometriosis is a common, estrogen-dependent chronic inflammatory disorder. It affects approximately 5-10% of reproductive-aged women and 20-50% of infertile women. Endometriosis also has a significant social and psychological impact on the lives of women. Despite such a significant burden, there is no endometriosis-specific treatment available. Bone marrow-derived stem cells (BMDCs) are shown to be involved in the pathogenesis of endometriosis by contributing regeneration and vascularization at the endometriotic lesions. In cancer and/or inflammation conditions, BMDCs get stimulated by chemokines and…

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When to do - and when not to do surgery for endometriosis

Endometriosis is an estrogen-dependent disorder. It was estimated to affect about 176 million women in the world and usually causes pelvic pain and infertility. Unfortunately, the current understanding of this disease is very limited. Though there are many remaining questions, the key question is how to treat patients with the disease.  Several managements are available such as hormonal contraceptives, progestins, and gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonists (GnRH-a) or antagonists. Still, the most frequently used management is laparoscopic surgery. Current therapeutic decision-making is…

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The role of inflammation, oxidative stress, angiogenesis, and apoptosis in the pathophysiology of endometriosis

Endometriosis is a very common gynecological disorder affecting approximately 10% of reproductive-aged women, and it is known by the abnormal growth of endometrial stroma and glands outside the uterus. Though the pathogenesis of endometriosis is not clearly understood so far, several findings suggest that inflammation plays a critical role in endometriosis initiation and progression. Also, other critical factors such as oxidative stress, apoptosis signaling, and angiogenesis are suggested. In this review, the Dr. Asemi group from Iran summarized the current…

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